[conspire] No more GNU HP Minis

Ruben Safir ruben at mrbrklyn.com
Thu Nov 5 11:02:24 PST 2009

Rick Moen wrote:
> Quoting Ruben Safir (ruben at mrbrklyn.com):
>> None of this is going to change until the major dealers make GNU systems
>> available for the public in large quanities.  That should be the
>> goal...
> Why?  Manufacturer preloads have a very strong tendency to suck -- and, for
> reasons explained upthread, to conceal problems with buggy and brittle
> proprietary drivers that you may not discover until the day you have to
> reload Linux and suddenly find out that, e.g., the horrible Broadcom WiFi 
> chipset doesn't work any more at all.
> That's stupid and ignominious.  You shouldn't want it.[1]

I want computers with GNU/Linux preloaded everywhere....  This is not a 
technical question, but a social one.  You don't REALLY believe that 
people will purchase computers without operating systems?

>> ...because after spending time in court over Windows EULA refund
>> debates, and DMCA trials, and pouring over the anti-trust findings,
>> and the seeing results, THIS CHANGE can NOT happen through the courts. 
> That's a non-sequitur reason.  You cannot make manufacturer preloads
> _cease_ to suck merely by shouting ALL-CAPS, stem-winding rhetoric at
> everyone.   It is a fact that cannot be shouted down, Ruben.



ThIs i$ yOUR St at ndaD TEEN-ag TXTING, WTF, on a cellphone.

> Linuxcare, Inc. used to provide a service of testing and certifying
> hardware compatibility for particular manufacturer makes / models --
> which I imagine consisted of my friend Duncan Mackinnon doing test loads
> on sample units in his tablespace that was grandiloquently called
> "Linuxcare Labs".  No doubt, Linuxcare got a small fee from the
> manufacturer for each such unit.
> I could go for something like that -- a Linux compatibility program
> attested to by a USPTO-registered certification-mark logo.  That would
> be a whole lot more meaningful and useful than manufacturer preloads.

Rick - Nothing is more important than having an OS on the computer you 
buy from Walmart...

> Yes, I'm aware that the public are in general a bunch of shiftless dolts
> who use whatever OS, however terrible, is preloaded, and lack the
> initiative to do any sort of actual operating system installation.  But 
> I don't have to join the madness -- and modern Linux distros with good
> installers and live CDs make the process painless and risk-free,
> eliminating all the usual excuses.  

I have so much going on in my life right now...very serious and 
emotional, depressing things, the last thing I needed was to turn my new 
computer purchase into an installfest.  But after 6 months of shopping 
for this darn things, I didn't want to compromise on it either, nor did 
I have the money to overpay.  Now I have choices because despite being  
a Pharmacist, I can read tech manuals, have tools and backgrounds, and a 
DESIRE to bend computers to my will.  But that has nothing to do with 
what it will take to get the majority of the public to switch to GNU.  
And that is my goal. 

I don't want the GNU OS's to be an exclusive  status symbol for the a 
certain class of people.  I want it to be an egalitarian, ubiquitous, 
ever present fact of everyones lives.  I want BILLIONS of GNU based 
systems everywhere. and all the jobs, labors and works that come with 
them.  And then I want Facebook to die :)

> So, I have no sympathy for people
> who demand preloads (let alone particular preloads).  _That's_ the first
> problem they need to fix, the one in their heads.

Couldn't disagree more.  Ubiquitous use of GNU systems will change the 
very way people think about their computers and more importantly, how 
they think about HUMAN CREATED INFORMATION  (as opposed to monkey 
created information I suppose) and how it affects their lives.  Asking 
people to buy bricks and memorize chipsets is not viable.

When I taught at the New School you should have seen how hard it is just 
to get people to understand what a symbolic variable is.

> [1] We Scandinavians have a patent on self-destructive obstinate
> attitudes, y'know.  (See chapter in Jared Diamond's _Collapse: How
> Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed_ on the failure and slow starvation
> of the Viking settlement in Greenland through sheer bigoted refusal to
> learn from the Inuit tribes they traded with.)  Watch out, or I might
> sue for infringement.
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All Hail Moen....

SEE YAH LATER...I need to go run out and pick up a 8gig flash drive.

BTW - I'd like to make a trip out there in the near future.  Could 
anyone put up with me for a few days?


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